kragore: (Default)
“Every year, everything I have ever learned,

in my lifetime

leads back to this: the fires and the black river of loss

whose other side

is salvation,

whose meaning the rest of us will never know.

To live in this world, you must be able

to do three things:

to love what is mortal;

to hold it

against your breast knowing

your own life depends on it and,

when the time comes

to let it go,

to let it go.”

– Mary Oliver, “In Blackwater Woods”

Away to Me

Feb. 2nd, 2011 04:02 pm
kragore: (Default)
While I own a pet, I am more than a pet owner. I am the steward of another living being's life.

From the day we accept the responsibility of their care, we also accept that we may be called to make their final decision. We play with them, care for them, comfort them when they are ill, feed them and nourish them in body and in mind.

They look to us for safety and well being. There are many who would say, "I want them to live as long as possible - I want them to die naturally."
That, in my eyes, is a fool's wish and a coward's excuse.

There is nothing natural about a pet's existence. Domestic cats revert to feral pretty rapidly, but their quality of life in that state is not what society currently find acceptable for a pet. There are no wild herds of majestic Holsteins roaming the plains. No wild packs of King Charles Spaniels carrying out the circle of life in the wilderness.

We have selectively bred domestic animals for our use - for our enjoyment and pleasure. As a result, we have an innate and irrefutable responsibility to them.

To hope that they simply die peacefully in their sleep of old age is an idyllic endgame we hope for all of our beloved charges. This is very often not reality.
The reality is much more grim - a sickness that can't be cured, a pain that can not be alleviated.

As the steward of this small life, we have the power and reasoning ability to choose to prolong their life, or end it with simple, quiet dignity.

This is a gift. The one last greatest kindness we can afford them. A kindness we can't even share with our own kind.
After contemplation of their quality vs quantity of life, it is us, the owners, who have to make that choice. The pets can tell you in so many unspoken ways when it is their time, but it is the owner who must bear the terrible, beautiful responsibility of carrying it out.

There will always, always be questions after wards. Did I do the right thing? Was it the right time? Was there anything else I could have done?
But there is comfort in a life well lived, and a life well tended. If you have done what you can within your means to make that creature's life comfortable, with little fear, and a treat and pat on the head once in a while - that is the accumulation of good.


"Away to me, lad," the shepherds call.
And so it goes - Away to me. Comforted by the thought that we've always tried to do right by our mute beasts.
kragore: (Default)
Reposted from Tashabear.


"Most of you know that my beloved husband, Wolfie, passed away on December 15th. (If you didn't, don't worry about it; I friends-locked the posts about his illness. He had H1N1 and died of complications after a seven week struggle.) He was much loved by his friends and family, and will be missed by more people that I think even he would have guessed.

So many of you have said how his art inspired you, and how you were touched by his humor and kindness and generosity. Here's what I want you to do:

If you see someone having a bad day, ask them what's troubling them. Give them a chance to vent. Sometimes that's all they want.

Pay random compliments.

Share. Share your time, share a joke, share a hug, share a drink.

Appreciate the beauty of the world. Everyone has a story, and they want to tell it.

Help people. Even getting something off the top shelf in the grocery store can make someone's day. Think of what helping with the clean-up after a party can do.

Play.

Be kind. Be loving. Be awesome to one another.

Don't forget him. Tell stories about him. Tell the people you love how you feel. I never missed a chance to tell him that I loved him -- don't ever miss a chance in your own lives.

Thanks, y'all. Go forth and do good things."
kragore: (Default)
I got a phone call yesterday from my mum.

There's this tone in her voice that I can identify instantly now. It's the "Someone's Died" tone. Unfortunately, I've had a lot of practice at identifing it.
I hate that I can smell it even over the phone lines, miles and miles away. )

conflicted

Jul. 1st, 2008 04:51 pm
kragore: (Default)
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080701/sc_afp/usattacksskoreaanimalcloneoffbeat

This makes me kind of sad.
I mean, I love my dog. I've loved all my furry companions., (get yer mind outta the gutter.) But a cloned version of them won't be *them* - it would be a hollow version of them.
As a dog owner, when I accepted his paperwork, I accepted the fact that I will outlive my companion. That I will love him, and some day, make the kindest decision of all, and let him go to to the celestial pack. Eventually, other furry personalities will come into my life - not replacements, just... different.


I'm sure that man loves his dog. Just as I'm sure all the dog handlers in Iraq, and before that, Vietnam, and before that, WWII - hell, let's go all the way back to the Romans and their dog handlers. I'm sure they all, to some degree, loved and respected their charges.

There are SO MANY perfectly trainable dogs, purebred dogs, out there looking for a home, looking for work. All you have to do is go to www.gsrne.org and look for yourself. Why go to the extraordinary lengths to clone one, when there's so many who already need our help?


*sigh*
- k.
kragore: (Bear)
First there was Star Wars. The old d6 based version.
For me, it was a gateway drug.
Kaamil Kragore, a Shistavan Merc, with a perchance for blowing the living shit out of things, and a touch 'o the force on her side.
The name stuck, and it's been about 10 years since I started using the handle Kragore.

From there, it was on to flirt with Seven Seas, and Rifts, and EarthDawn, and a Heros campaign.
Pacifist battlecat ligers, compulsive button-pushing necromancing T'srang, and genetically altered, flying, blue-glowing telekenetic river otters.
There was some LARPing in there too, but then... then...

...there was D&D. And my two longest running RPG personalities.

Terail - Centaur with a fabulous charge and a mean 1-2 lance/hammer combo. She *was* the Cavalry. That motley crew had the best time - Gummy worms and salsa for the win. :)

and Sayge, dear little Sayge... innocent at first, Old by the end - Half Halfling/Half Silver Dragon Druid who's greatest pleasure in life were her pets - in SwiftPaws especially, her "pet" dire wolf, who would one day become a god...


These were epic stories, told over months, sometimes years, around a table, in the company of friends.
They were spells being picked for use through the "day", and the eraser and the pencils and the carefully folded character sheets that were eventually left with the GM, because inevidibly, someone would forget theirs.
It was the dice bags and boxes and the totems and the little good luck rituals, and the silent plea... "please don't click, please don't click!"

These tales were told because long before I was born, a guy thought it would be fun to make up a game. And because of him, and a few other people, nerds and geeks of all different stripes were given the power of creativity. Today were have entire bookstore shelves devoted to RPGs. It spawned LARPing, and gave a structure to many of the MMORPGs of today.

I had to explain to my younger brother just who Gary Gygax was today, and I felt Old, like Sayge, my wonderful little Half Dragon who always wished for Wings that Worked. I explained to him that there would likely be no geekiness like that he knows today, were it not for Mr. Gygax.
Lo, today is a sad day for all geekdom, for the Great Grand Game Master has folded his screen, and left the table.

I had a chance many moons ago, and I took it, but here it is again.
Thank you sir, for everything.

Another misfit geek,
- K.
kragore: (Default)
Last Christmas was a day of never ending chunk blowing suck. I know, I just checked. Those were my words.

This year, we got up, exchanged presents, and now mom is puttering with her brandy-new electric griddle. Chances are I'll get pancakes out of this deal. It's a pretty good deal.

Dad is irritated by the amount we spent on presents, but to that I say "Bahh!" I have a job that allows me to get things they want/need, damnit, so I'm going to.

There's a great sense of sorrowful releaf, so different from the acute grief of last year. Last year was a time of shock, reaction and intense loss.

This year, this time around, it's so very... relaxing. A strange thing to say, true, but that selfish part of me thinks "Well, at least now I get to hang out with my mom". My mom, whom I've missed very much these past holidays, gets to stay home, in her jammies, and just be. She can make us pancakes if she wants to, or just watch the food network if she wants. She doesn't have to be at anyone's beck and call.
It's fabulous. I've missed my mom.

So I guess, things aren't that bad. I mean, they are, but they're different. Mellower. Still a bucket of suck, but not soul-wrenching, mind blowing suck. Manageable suck.

I smell pancakes and blueberry sauce.
I have to go get reacquainted with my mother now.


I hope you all have a wonderfully peaceful holiday.
With hugs and love,
- k.

100

Dec. 24th, 2007 03:30 pm
kragore: (Default)
So are the days of our lives. )
kragore: (Default)
A very old friend called me last night - My friend Zippy, (not Patriots Zippy in NH - Hoosac Valley High Shool Zippy, now the MP.)

He called because he and his wife have to update their will before they ship out to Germany in December.
I guess the Army likes to know you've got you're shit in order in case they have to plunk you down in front of an IED.

He asked me to be the Legal Guardian for his kids should something happen to him and the wife.

...

I told him this is something I have to discuss with The Man. Told him I'd call him back in a few days.

I understand why it's me he's asked. His family is not what we'd call reliable. The Wife's family is non-existant. My folks are entering the grandparent phase of life. My sister isn't at a place in life to be responsible, or afford kids.
I am currently at a place, where if, gods forbid, something should happen, I could give them a fighting chance.

I wouldn't have custody of *all* the kids, (his two from a previous marriage will stay with the good-for-nothing-but-welfare mother, the Wife's two kids from a previous marriage will go back to their bio-father,) but the two produced from their union would become my responsiblity should anything happen to the both of them.

Now, if it were any other Joe Shmo, I wouldn't have as much concern. But with his line of work, the statistics of something happening jump significantly. Of course, this wouldn't be an issue unless something happens to the both of them, but I wonder what kind of legal quagmire I could be getting myself into if I say yes.

I want to say yes, but it makes me nervous.
- K.
kragore: (Default)
Mom is finally at peace with things, I think. She dropped me a short note about how she and my Grandmother had been able to talk last night while she was fairly lucid, and it didn't devolve into a snarling scream-fest. That mom said things she needed to say, and they've made peace.
That actually signals something to me - it tells me that she's stopped fighting, probably in every sense.

The part of me that is very american and can't stand the idea of looseing, (ie, dieing in this case,) is selfish enough to ask why she doesn't keep fighting, but the much, much bigger part of me just wants her to have a gentle goodbye, a a quiet passage.

Really, in the end, that's all I can wish for any of us. Life takes it's ups and downs, hits it share of snags and pits, but in the end we are all made equal.


It's been a long week since monday. The dr's think she probably won't last through the weekend, but we've been told that before.
I think maybe this time it's different.

- K.
kragore: (Default)
It is not that there is anamosity between my grandmother and I. There's a great deal of... nothing.

Growing up, I always got the feeling in her eyes I was supposed to be better, do better... but at what, or how, was never explained. Affection was a cold thing that had to be earned, almost.


My grandmother has bee dieing of ALS for the past few years.
Unlike Alzhimer's- the long slow goodbye, this was ALS- the long slow decent into raving abusive bitterness towards life.

I have not seen or talked to my grandmother since... mother's day. But yesterday.. I knew something was up with her. Part of me feels guilty for not calling her more often. The more rational part of me know what kind of day that would trigger for my mother on the other end of the line. So I don't call.





It is likely that she will die very soon. I wish for her sweet release, from this world to the next. She has been miserable in this plane since my aunt died. This next step for her, I'm pained to say, is long overdue.



I do not often ask for favors. But if you have a higher being to whom you commune, please maybe slip in a small request to let her journey on. Let her slip these mortal bonds and be free again.

My mother's heart is just too tired to do it alone.

- k.

So sad...

Jul. 19th, 2007 04:29 pm
kragore: (Default)
“We who choose to surround ourselves with lives more temporary than our own live within a fragile circle, easily and often breached. Unable to accept its awful gaps, we still would live no other way. We cherish memory as the only certain immortality, never fully understanding the necessary plan. The life of a horse, often half our own, seems endless until one day. That day has come and gone for me, and I am once again within a somewhat smaller circle."

- Irving Townsend, "The Once Known Prince"
kragore: (Default)
cut for those who can't abide harm to animals... )
kragore: (Default)
We all kind of expected it. In fact, we joked about it.
But it doesn't negate that one of the world's most vocal and vibrant conservationists has passed away.
A wife has lost a husband. A father has lost a son. Two children have lost their father.

And the natural world has lost one of it's mightiest champions.

Many people are going to miss you, Steve-o.
We can only hope that we've heard your message in the time you were with us.

- K.

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